It’s better. It’s bigger. It’s a lot longer.
Published: April 24, 2013
It’s better. It’s bigger. It’s a lot longer. And it’s going to rock you, sear your eardrums, punish your liver and have you shakin’ your ass for two whole weeks.
That’s six nights spread out over three cities and dozens of venues. All of which makes this year’s Blowout our biggest ever.
But what makes it really special? It’s the programming, which embraces a vital mix of super-local bands good enough to get out of the basement and on a local stage, along with rough-and-ready veterans of the local music scene, and even a few reunions and homecomings for artists who’ve come back from oblivion.
And it’s the settings, which include one-stop rock shop the Majestic compound, the mean and booze-soaked streets of Hamtramck, fabulous Ferndale, with its variety of vigorous venues.
But, honestly, the festival would be nothing at all if not for you. You know who we’re talking to. You guys and galls who make the music and play your hearts out regardless of the monetary rewards or fame. All of you are responsible for keeping the flames of Detroit civilization burning red hot. And dazzle us every year.
This year, we’re more excited than ever to be dazzled by your talent, your swagger and your energy — all over again.
Friday, April 26, 2013
VENUE: POLISH NATIONAL ALLIANCE HALL
1 a.m. > THE MEATMEN
Kings of the offensive, lords of the obscene, dukes of filth — Tesco Vee and his Meatmen will stomp all over your precious sensibilities, not to mention your morals, bark a few choice words and then piss off. Be warned.
MIDNIGHT > EASY ACTION
In Detroit, John Brannon is as well known for Easy Action as he is for his work with Negative Approach and the Laughing Hyenas. That stands as a testament to the power, ferocity — and the groove — of this incredible band.
11 p.m. > CHILD BITE
Delightfully demonic demolition derbies … Child Bite shows somehow threads melodies through thunderous reimaginings of heavy metal. It’s dark, loud, fast and weird — and weirdly charming.
10:10 p.m. > NICE HOOVES
Embrace the abrasive. Fast, heavy and ominous — the rhythms lock in while the guitars and vocals wail in a searing, sinister fervor. This quartet sounds like (and onstage often looks like) a wobbling, blaring, flame-ringed locomotive … steady as she goes.
9:30 p.m. > GOLDEN TORSO
There are only so many words for a ferocious kinda music, and Golden Torso’s is the kinda sound that hammers the thesaurus out of my hands before hammering me right in the face; amped-up, chugging hardcore-punk revivalist jams nuanced with some grimy, alt-rock riffs.
VENUE: POLISH NATIONAL ALLIANCE LOUNGE
1:10 a.m. > TERRIBLE TWOS
Try to lock in for casual foot-tapping or head bobbing, and you’ll either ruinously kink your neck or have your shins slewfooted from under you by the festive moshers who’d rather you get the F outta the way. Spice-up your punk with gnarly grooves and penchants for droning space rock.
12:20 a.m. > BLEACHED
Two girls making a whole ton of noise, this L.A. post-punk rock ’n’ roll beast recently impressed on a few dates with the Deadstring Brothers. Let’s see if they can do it again.
11:30 p.m. > AGAINST THE GRAIN
Gruff, whiskey-fueled hard rock and punk a la Motörhead and Zeke. Expect no ballads.
10:40 p.m. > SNAKEWING
Heavy and pissed-off, Snakewing combines old-school punk, metal and hardcore, creating a sound so nasty, so diabolical, even the Lord of Darkness trembles in fear.
9:50 p.m. > THE JACKPINE SNAG
This Lansing band describes its sound as “heavy blues-grunge-rock stuff,” which pretty much hits the nail on the head. Think of a really raw “Soundgarden,” think “Kyuss,” think “the Jackpine Snag is a really weird name.”
9 p.m. > HUNTERS
All the way from Brooklyn, Pa., but Hunters sound very much like they could be a hometown band. A guy-gal two-piece, these punks wail and stomp like the Cramps fucking with Bantam Rooster.
12:40 a.m. > THE HARD LESSONS
Is there anything left to be said about the Hard Lessons? This perennial Blowout fave will whip up a storm headlining at Small’s — with its alt-rock-pop anthems; the place will be packed. These guys keep getting better.
11:50 p.m. > TIMOTHY MONGER STATE PARK
Mid-Michigan-based Tim Monger graduated from a student of folk-rock mythology to a master of eclectic Americana-pop, crafting sweeping ballads blooming with warm toned acoustic guitars, chirping banjos and sighing brass adornments.
11 p.m. > MOD ORANGE
The men of Mod Orange describe themselves as a “Detroit-based power trio rocking your socks off with originality and theme-colored instruments.” True enough, they carry that orange theme forward, and their pop-rock anthems are killer.
10:20 p.m. > KICKSTAND BAND
This trio’s got some gosh-darn goodies to twist and shout along with. Many enticing melodies, happy-pop harmonies and shuffling, throwback rock-rhythms to be found with Kickstand. Those heavy-hearted teenagers, with tears on their pillows after Daddy took the T-birds away, will be happy once again.
9:30 p.m. > TWINE TIME
This is what happens when busy delegates of the twentysomething punk sect in town apply their rough and tumble surf-rock inclinations toward a more affable, pop throwback style. That angsty-punk inclination keeps the band’s sunny pop balladry distinctively taut, like it could snap at the next chorus.
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